Video Essentials

Live Streaming Video Gets Big—Literally—in Viewers’ Living Rooms

Brands are turning to live events in a big way, streaming live from store openings, concerts, or other happenings to keep viewers engaged. But when planning live event streams, take a note from Yahoo and consider the living room viewers. Some people will stream to their big screen living room TVs, and you’ve got to deliver a big clear picture for them.

YahooSpeaking at the recent Streaming Media West conference, Chris Mangum, senior digital media manager for live and on-demand video streaming at Yahoo, explained what Yahoo had to do this year to satisfy living room viewers.

“The big wrinkle that came in for us this year is our concert series that we’re streaming,” Mangum said. “As far as bandwidth goes we’re delivering to OTT devices now—Apple TV, Roku, and Xbox—and to deliver a good-looking quality picture on those devices you’ve got to bump up the bitrate. That in turn increases your bandwidth that you need. We’re streaming just under 7 megs so that it looks pristine on your 50- or 60-inch TV. So we definitely have to take that into consideration.”

To handle that high bitrate stream, Yahoo works with the CDN (content delivery network) Limelight

“We partner with Limelight right now and they’ve been doing a great job for us delivering globally on every live event that we do, not just our concert series,” Mangum added.

A big picture isn’t enough, though. Yahoo recently added chat to its live videos to provide a richer experience for viewers.

“From the user experience perspective the chat feature is very important,” Mangum continued. “We know that. We recently as of Friday released an update to our live experience—screen.yahoo.com/live—that includes a chat feature, so we’re very excited to see what value that adds.”

For more on streaming live events, watch the panel discussion below.



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